Monday, November 3, 2008

Love One Another

Today as I was spending extra time seeking the Lord, I thought I was praying about our nation and the election tomorrow. As always "I think" instead of submit to the Holy Spirit. I am thankful that the Spirit does work even if I am headstrong. Yesterday during the sermon, the pastor made the point that it's hard to expect God to bless America when we continue to allow the murder of unborn children and the deviation from God's design for marriage. So today, as I am praying for America and the election of a new leader, I feel the Spirit nudging me to pray for repentance. Repentance? I thought it should be for guidance, not repentance. But isn't that where it always begins, repenting of our sins, whether worldly, nationally, or individually? As I continued to ponder the sin of America, in addition to abortion and homosexuality, I thought of other sins that plague our nation. Sins such as pornography, lust, covetousness and then I thought about greed. Wouldn't greed be the bottom line for the financial situation we are now suffering through? In Rom 1:29-32 it says "being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil, untrustworthy,. . . and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them." (NASU) As I was thinking about corporate sin America needs to repent of, I then was prompted to start searching my own heart for unrepentant sin. I hate it when God does that. Don't get me wrong, I need it, but I don't like it. It's like when a parent asks their child, "Do you want me to punish you?" Of course not, but that's usually what they need, just as I needed to search my own heart. God has a way of shining the light right where we need to focus. Immediately I felt Him say, "Love." That's right, "Love." Love? There's this person in my life that I find very hard to love or show love to. In fact, it would never even cross my mind or heart to love them. Now bitterness or hatred, I can do that. As I was thinking about this person I was complaining to Him, that she is really an "unlovely" person. She's mean spirited, hateful and spiteful. How can I love her? The answer promptly came, "You are those things too, yet I love you. I loved you enough to send my Son to die for you." OUCH! Those were my toes that just got stomped. I know we are commanded to love one another, but it can't mean the unlovely? Yes it does, because we are all unlovely and full of sin. The King James version of the Bible mentions the word love over 300 times so it must be pretty important. Love one another is Christ's new commandment: "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." John 13:34-35 (NIV) So as I continue to pray for our nation, new president, repentance for our sins, I pray for myself that I will be more Christ-like in showing love for others, especially the unlovely.

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